Common Water Heater Problems

A water heater is a necessary household appliance that supplies warm water for normal home activities such as bathing and cooking. Your water heater may be easy to ignore until you’re suddenly taking cold showers. You might also notice that there’s a leak or not enough hot water. These are problems that most northern Virginia area homeowners have noticed at some point, and they all indicate that you require water heater service from a trusted plumbing repair contractor.

Little or No Hot Water

Photo of plumber performing water heater serviceSome of the more common problems can be fixed without professional water heater service. For instance, if there is no hot water from your gas heater, the problem may be caused by your pilot light going out. You could light the pilot yourself if you know how to do so. If you have an electric model, the problem may be in the electrical line or the breaker, so check if it has tripped. If you discover that is the case, call a northern Virginia area electrical repair service.

In some cases, the hot water that is available may not be enough. Check if the thermostat is set too low and increase the temperature. If the thermostat indicates the right temperature, the problem could be the result of sediment accumulation, which reduces its efficiency. This usually happens as your heater ages, decreasing the amount of hot water the heater can produce. This should be flushed to get rid of these mineral deposits.

Leaking Tank

Another obvious sign that you need water heater service is when there condensation dripping from the tank or moisture around its base. A closed system is necessary for proper function, so when you notice moisture seeping from the tank, it might need to be replaced. On the other hand, the leak might be from pipes or relief valves, in which case simple repair or inexpensive replacements may be enough. Note that a leak may also lead to an increase in your northern Virginia area utility service bills as a result of the lost energy that is used up.


If you are using a gas heater, it is critical to always be on the lookout for gas odors that result from gas leaks. In case of a leak, close the gas-shutoff valve supplying water to the heater and vacate the house once you have opened all the doors and windows. Call the gas or northern Virginia area plumbing repair company immediately to fix the problem. You might also notice the smell or rotten eggs from your tank. Certain bacteria feed off the sediments that accumulate in the tank, creating hydrogen gas that mixes with the decay in your sacrificial anode. Flushing the heater and adding some concentrated peroxide solution would help clean it out and get rid of the stink.

If you’re unable to diagnose the water heater problem appropriately or if it persists, a professional repair service must be sought as soon as possible. In addition, a thorough inspection of your water heater by a professional plumber is recommended at least once a year to get rid of any potential problems and possibly save you a lot in repairs. If you require expert water heater service or repair in northern Virginia area VA, contact Golden Plumbing and Heating today.

Golden plumbing is located in Manassas and serves customers in Prince William, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Arlington counties.